Jacobsohn, Siegfried

(1881-1926)
   critic, publisher, and editor; founder and first editor of Die Schaubuhne (Weltbuhne* from April 1918). Born in Berlin,* he began auditing literature courses at the university at fifteen. De-termined to become a theater* critic, he was working with two theater groups at thirteen and dropped out of Gymnasium at sixteen. A regular attendee of Berlin's rich theater offerings, he met Hellmut von Gerlach* and, with his en-dorsement, began writing criticism in 1901 for Welt am Montag. A plagiarism charge, from which he was totally cleared, brought his dismissal in 1904. Tem-porarily living abroad, he returned to Berlin in 1905 intent on founding his own theater journal. After several financially troubled years, he established his in-dependence in 1912 by founding the Verlag der Schaubuhne. Broadened in 1913 to include satirical offerings and economic coverage, Schaubuhne became a "Weekly for Politics, Art, Economics" (Wochenschrift fur Politik, Kunst, Wirt-schaft). Jacobsohn's premier writers, whom he granted substantial freedom, were Alfred Polgar, Julius Bab, Egon Friedell, Willi Handl, Herbert Ihering,* Lion Feuchtwanger,* and Kurt Tucholsky.*
   Seeing his journal increasingly politicized by the war, Jacobsohn renamed it Weltbuhne; the change reflected his own belief that theater was also becoming politicized. During the November Revolution* he worked closely with Kurt Hiller* and the Rat geistiger Arbeiter (Council of Intellectual Workers). Mean-while, with its wealth of talent, Weltbuhne embodied the spirit of left-wing pacifism during the Weimar era. Jacobsohn used its pages to promote the political theater of Erwin Piscator* and Jürgen Fehling* and to present interviews with Bertolt Brecht,* Ernst Toller,* and Ernst Barlach.* In May 1922 he was among the first to claim that Expressionism* had run its course. "What is the good of an expressive art," he wrote, "if it has no content worth expressing?" On 3 December 1926 he suddenly died during an epileptic seizure.
   Jacobsohn believed that it was the critic's responsibility to measure the worth of a production by what was achievable; he applied the same standard to the Republic. Regarding theater, he focused on the artistically experimental and shunned "business" theater as unworthy of his time. He championed a synthetic theater that combined classical and modern elements and identified Max Rein-hardt* as the paragon of such a synthesis. Shakespeare he deemed an unexcelled poetic genius, Kleist the greatest of German dramatists, and Goethe the greatest of German poets. His favored modern dramatists included Ibsen, Strindberg, and Wedekind. He also used Weltbuhne to attack those whom he disdained, includ-ing Alfred Kerr* and Maximilian Harden.* After the war he broadened his commentary to include public and international issues, dedicating the journal to a struggle against the miscarriage of justice,* the abasement of humanity, and war. Because of his steadfastness, Weltbuhne was a major source of ethical power during the Weimar period.
   REFERENCES:Benz and Graml, Biographisches Lexikon;Deak, Weimar Germany's Left-Wing Intellectuals; NDB, vol. 10; Poor, Kurt Tucholsky.

A Historical dictionary of Germany's Weimar Republic, 1918-1933. .

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  • JACOBSOHN, SIEGFRIED — (1881–1926), German critic and left wing editor. Jacobsohn began his career as the drama critic of various Berlin dailies. In 1905 he founded the theater weekly Schaubuehne, and until 1919 published the theater annual, Das Jahr der Buehne. Later… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Jacobsohn, Siegfried — (1881 1926)    Critic. Jacobsohn began his career as principal theater critic for Berlin s Welt am Montag newspaper in 1901, and in that capacity became a vociferous Max Reinhardt supporter. Concomitant with his support for Reinhardt was his… …   Historical dictionary of German Theatre

  • Siegfried Jacobsohn — (né le 28 janvier 1881 à Berlin 3 décembre 1926 à Berlin) est un journaliste et critique de théâtre allemand. Sa revue Die Weltbühne passait pour être un forum pacifiste de la gauche. De nombreuses personnes y ont contribué comme Kurt Tucholsk …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Siegfried I. — Siegfried ist ein männlicher Vorname. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Herkunft und Bedeutung des Namens 2 Namenstag 3 Varianten 4 Bekannte Namensträger 5 Siegfried in der Kunst …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Jacobsohn — Jacobsohn,   Siegfried, Journalist, * Berlin 28. 1. 1881, ✝ ebenda 3. 12. 1926; Theaterkritiker; gründete 1905 die für das deutsche Theaterleben wichtige Zeitschrift »Die Schaubühne« (ab 1918, nach Erweiterung der Themenkreise »Die Weltbühne«);… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Siegfried Jacobsohn — (* 28. Januar 1881 in Berlin; † 3. Dezember 1926 in Berlin) war ein deutscher Journalist und Theaterkritiker jüdischer Abstammung. Inhaltsverz …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Siegfried Jacobsohn — (28 January 1881 ndash; 3 December 1926) was a German writer and influential theatre critic. Life Born in Berlin into a Jewish family, Jacobsohn decided at the age of 15 to become a theatre critic. In October 1897 he left school without gaining… …   Wikipedia

  • Jacobsohn — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Edith Jacobsohn (geborene Schiffer; 1891–1935), deutsche Übersetzerin und Verlegerin Hermann Jacobsohn (1879–1933), deutscher Sprachwissenschaftler Johannes Jacobsohn (1890–1942), deutscher jüdischer… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Siegfried Kalischer — Von links nach rechts: Siegfried Kalischer, Edward Flatau, Louis Jacobsohn Lask, Bernhard Pollack; Berlin, um 1900 Siegfried Kalischer (ps. Leitfried[1], * 7. Mai 1862 in Thorn; † nach 1937) war ein deutscher Neurologe und Schriftst …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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